help! how can i remove only one layer of paint?

Discussion in 'Bicycle Restoration Tips' started by Nardo, Sep 28, 2011.

  1. #1 Posted Sep 28, 2011
    Nardo

    Nardo Look Ma, No Hands!

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    I recently purchased an old skiptooth hiawatha ( see http://thecabe.com/vbulletin/showth...h-Hiawatha-content&p=92554&posted=1#post92554 for pics) it looks as if was painted at one time red white and blue, the paint is chipping off and it appears to be a nice shiny factory green underneath. I used the plastic end of a bic lighter last night and the paint was coming off, but i was afraid I would mess up the green underneath. Any tricks to getting this off and preserving the original paint? Also any info on the Cleveland welding hiawatha is greatly appreciated! I'm anxious to dig into this bike and start making it look better!
     
  2. #2 Posted Sep 28, 2011
    Krautwaggen

    Krautwaggen Cruisin' on my Bluebird

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    There are a number of ways to take off paint and they depend on how well the frame was prepped before painting, what sort of paint was used for the repaint, and what sort of paint was used on the original paint job. Usually original paint is pretty tough. If the paint will flake off it may just take some time with a plastic scraper. You may try this in conjunction with a heat gun or hair dryer (but don't over heat the area or you'll take all of the paint off)

    Some times mineral spirits will work, Sometimes lacquer thinner will work, and sometimes oven cleaner is the answer. There are also graffiti removal products out there that will work pretty well. I believe Motsenbockers Lift off 4 is often used when stripping cars down to original paint. I have used Oven cleaner with good results. IF you use chemicals like oven cleaner you must absolutely wear chemical resistant gloves. If you buy Latex or rubber gloves of that nature make sure you get the thicker ones. I've seen photos of peoples hands who have tears in their gloves and lets just say that chemical burns aren't the coolest thing you can show off to your friends. When using Oven cleaner (and some of the other products) you can use scotch brite pads of varying abrasive levels. The green is the coarsest and therefore will take off the most paint. You might start with the brown or grey, however, to make sure you're not biting into your original paint too much. Rinse the area you're working with clean water fairly often. You don't want the chemical burning through to bare metal.

    Regardless what route you go, there is kind of an art to paint removal. It's a "Just right" situation too little effort and the paint won't come off, too much and you'll go too far. Go slow, be careful, and have fun!
     
  3. #3 Posted Sep 28, 2011
    jpromo

    jpromo Cruisin' on my Bluebird

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    I've seen Xylene or some other form of synthetic reducer recommended in another thread on here.
     
  4. #4 Posted Sep 28, 2011
    Nardo

    Nardo Look Ma, No Hands!

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    awesome info! So, should I play it safe and start with a little heat and a plastic scraped? Maybe a little wiping with some mineral spirits.

    I would guess its spray paint, with no prep before painting, cause the spots of green on the frame that are showingw, shine like new paint. I don't see brush strokes either. They sprayed right over the headbadge, but it looks as
     
  5. #5 Posted Sep 28, 2011
    Nardo

    Nardo Look Ma, No Hands!

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    looks as if they removed the chaingaurd before painting it white. I shall tear down and investigate further today after work
     
  6. #6 Posted Dec 26, 2011
    jd56

    jd56 Riding a '38 Autocycle Deluxe

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    How did the paint removal project go?

    I was researching the posts as to the best way to remove a sprayed on painted surface to reveal the original paint and came across your post.
    Not ever having to ever attempt this, I would love to hear how your Hiawatha paint removal went and what worked best for you. Patrick and jpromo and a few others have given some some great ideas but, caution to the wind as the process is started was warned.

    My newest acquision is this painted flat black (everything was spray bombed) Sabre flyer. Not one to normally do paint work and not wanting it baking soda blasted, because it will take the original paint off, I'm seeking help and considering doing it myself. Provided it's not too hard to do.

    Oven Cleaner, Xylene, Mineral Spirits, or even laquer thinner and various scotchbrites appears to be the concensus on the paint removal. 0000 steel wool on all the chrome. Then there is the decal issue. How do you get these cleaned.
    I would imagine using a plastic scraper would damage the decals.
    Then there is the botched up red painted tank that has decals.

    Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
     

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